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Australasia News

Cabinless, emissionless vehicle foretelling underground’s autonomous future  

By: Martin Creamer     30th September 2020 Mining Weekly on Wednesday watched a cabinless emission-free next-generation mining vehicle autonomously load, haul and dump in an underground mine, without a human in sight. The cabinless design places emphasis on the extent to which traditional human operation at the rockface is becoming a... 

Sandvik intelligent drill series continues to meet evolving customer demands

By: Simone Liedtke     30th September 2020 As rotary blasthole drill technology continues to advance, Sandvik’s iSeries family of intelligent drills continues to grow to meet evolving customer demands – as can be seen with the Sandvik DR410i drill rig. Considered a “compact, powerful, technologically advanced rig designed to produce the... 

MC Mining reports solid full-year result despite Covid-19 impact

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     30th September 2020 Despite the adverse impact of Covid-19 and the related lockdown in South Africa, coal miner MC Mining narrowed its loss for the financial year ended June 30. Acting CEO Brenda Berlin noted on September 30 that the company had made considerable progress on its strategy prior to the lockdown. This... 

Aviation, other transport sectors accelerating adoption of hydrogen as a fuel source

By: Marleny Arnoldi     30th September 2020 The World Platinum Investment Council (WPIC) says developments in aviation – and across other modes of transport - are accelerating the adoption of hydrogen as a mainstream, sustainable fuel source. The council notes that aerospace company Airbus is not alone in believing that hydrogen... 

Sandvik launches new RDX5 rock drill

By: Simone Liedtke     30th September 2020 Following the virtual grand opening of its Rock Drill Innovation Centre, in Finland, Swedish mining gear and metal-cutting tools maker Sandvik launched its RDX5 rock drill on September 30. The rock drill builds on the success of “the most dependable rock drill in the market”, the HLX5, and... 

Geopolitics, social responsibility rise in the risk ranks for mining globally  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     30th September 2020 Mining executives across the world have ranked licence to operate, high-impact risks and productivity and rising costs as the top three risks facing their business over the next year. Multinational professional services firm EY's 'Top 10 Business Risks and Opportunities – 2021' survey for the... 

Geopolitics, social responsibility rise in the risk ranks for mining globally

Bowen completes Broadmeadow East buy

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th September 2020 ASX-listed Bowen Coking Coal has completed the acquisition of the Broadmeadow East coking coal project from US major Peabody. The two companies in June this year struck an agreement allowing Bowen to acquire the Broadmeadow East project for a A$1-million cash consideration. Bowen would also pay... 

Rio Tinto wraps up Janice Lake 2020 campaign

By: Creamer Media Reporter      30th September 2020 Rio Tinto Exploration Canada (RTEC) has completed its summer exploration programme at the Janice Lake Sedimentary copper/silver project in northern Saskatchewan. TSX-V-listed Forum Energy Metals reports that a total of 25 holes have been completed for 818 m on seven targets. Assay results are... 

Anova completes Second Fortune sale

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th September 2020 Junior Anova Metals has completed the A$9-million divestment of its Second Fortune gold mine, and the greater Linden gold project, to the Linden Gold Alliance. Anova on Wednesday confirmed that it had received the remaining A$4.5-million of the A$5-million up-front cash consideration. 

Pilbara meets shipping targets, draws down funds

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th September 2020 Spodumene and tantalum producer Pilbara Minerals has completed the drawdown of a $110-million finance facility, used to redeem the outstanding balance owing under a $100-million senior secured Nordic Bond. The Nordic Bond was used to support financing of the Stage 1 Pligangoora lithium/tantalum... 

Changes planned for NAIF

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th September 2020 The Australian government has announced reforms to the Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility (NAIF), which will provide more flexibility, increased risk appetite and widen the scope of projects eligible for funding. Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia Keith Pitt said the... 

IPC approves Narrabri plans

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th September 2020 The New South Wales Independent Planning Commission (IPC) has approved the A$3.6-billion Narrabri coal seam gas project, being punted by oil and gas major Santos. Santos has sought development consent for up to 850 gas wells and associated infrastructure across the 95 000 ha project area,... 

IPC approves Narrabri plans

Indiana lodges $95m claim against Tanzania

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th September 2020 ASX-listed Indiana Resources has lodged a $95-million compensation claim against the government of Tanzania over the ‘illegal expropriation” of the Ntaka Hill nickel project. The dispute arose from a 2017 decision by the Tanzanian government to amend the Mining Act, abolishing the legislative... 

Gold-buying by central banks seen climbing from near decade low

By: Bloomberg     30th September 2020 Gold buying by central banks, an important driver of bullion’s advance in recent years, is forecast to pick up in 2021 after a slowdown this year. Citigroup Inc. sees demand from the official sector rising to about 450 tons after a drop to 375 tons this year, which would be the lowest in a... 

EV demand will spark lithium mining reinvention

By: Bloomberg     30th September 2020 Lithium producers must reinvent mining methods for the key metal used in rechargeable batteries to meet rising demand from the electric-vehicle industry, according to Standard Lithium’s top executive. “The industry’s going to have some challenges as higher purity lithium compounds are required --... 

Sandvik digitises mechanical cutting equipment to improve safety 

By: Simone Liedtke     29th September 2020 In addition to performance and extensive safety features, engineering company Sandvik says its mechanical cutting equipment also offer effective digital solutions to boost productivity, reduce operating costs and maximise equipment lifetime. One such mechanical cutting equipment solution is... 

Carbide recycling can create jobs for mine communities – Sandvik  

By: Martin Creamer     29th September 2020 The local extraction of carbide inserts can create job opportunities for communities living around mines – “a true win, win, win situation for society, our customers and ourselves”, Sandvik rock tools division VP Nina Axman enthused on Tuesday. Sandvik is developing a new recycling process that... 

Carbide recycling can create jobs for mine communities – Sandvik
Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer reports on Sandvik’s mining innovation virtual event. Video: Darlene Creamer

Newtrax gives insight into its Collision Avoidance System during Sandvik conference

By: Simone Liedtke     29th September 2020 Heavy traffic, large equipment, poor visibility and blind spots create the potential for accidents in an industry that demands world-class operational performance and has the expectation of zero harm. Underground mining Internet of Things (IoT) service provider Newtrax believes its Collision... 

EPC awarded at Coburn

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 ASX-listed Primero Group has been awarded preferred engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) status at fellow listed Strandline Resources’ Coburn mineral sands project, in Western Australia. The EPC work would amount to some A$150-million in revenue for Primero, and would cover the EPC,... 

AngloGold Ashanti Hospital brings 175 more beds to the West Rand

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th September 2020 Gauteng acting health MEC Jacob Mamabolo says the planned AngloGold Ashanti Hospital will greatly contribute to the provision of quality healthcare services in the West Rand area of Gauteng. Gold miner AngloGold Ashanti has committed to the long-term investment that will help the Gauteng health... 

Olive Downs coking coal mine gets final approvals

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 The Queensland government has granted a mining lease for the A$1-billion Olive Downs coal mine being developed by Pembroke Resources. The project is forecast to produce 15-million tonnes a year of saleable coal over a 79-year mine life, and would create over 1 000 jobs in the region. 

Olive Downs coking coal mine gets final approvals

Warrawoona feasibility strikes gold

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 A feasibility study on the Warrawoona gold project, in the Pilbara, has estimated that the project would require a capital investment of A$120-million, ASX-listed Calidus Resources said. The feasibility study estimated that the project would produce an average of 90 000 oz/y over the first... 

Orion Minerals raises exploration funds  

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 Base metals developer Orion Minerals will raise A$350 000 through a share placement to a South African sophisticated and professional investor. The ASX- and JSE-listed company on Tuesday announced that it would issue 10.5-million shares, at a price of 3.3c each under its existing placement... 

Nickel-cobalt developer Jervois unveils vertical integration plans

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 Australia-based Jervois Mining on Tuesday announced that it would buy the São Miguel Paulista refinery, in Brazil, advancing plans to transform the company into a vertically integrated producer when its Idaho cobalt operation, in the US, starts production. The company, which trades on the ASX... 

Nickel-cobalt developer Jervois unveils vertical integration plans
The Idaho site, in the US.

EcoGraf inks option over land in WA

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 ASX-listed EcoGraf has inked a two-year option agreement with the Western Australian government over a 6.7 ha site in the Kwinana-Rockingham Industrial Area. EcoGraf signed an option to lease on two of the lots in the Industrial Area, with plans to develop a graphite processing facility in two... 

Drilling to start at Browns Range

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 Mineral sands developer Northern Minerals has set a A$5-million exploration budget for the 2021/21 financial year at its Browns Range project, in Western Australia. Drill rigs are expected on site in mid October, the company said on Tuesday, with the exploration programme focused on increasing... 

Perseus plans DFS at Bagoe

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th September 2020 ASX- and TSX-listed gold miner Perseus Mining will undertake a definitive feasibility study (DFS) on the Bagoe gold project, in Cote d’Ivoire, after completing its acquisition of Exore Resources. Perseus in June this year made a A$59.8-million takeover offer for fellow listed Exore, which held... 

South Africa has 22 operating manganese mines – AmaranthCX ­ 

By: Martin Creamer     28th September 2020 South Africa has 22 operating manganese mines, with only four of them owned in part by Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE)-listed companies, AmaranthCX director Paul Miller has calculated. All are in the Northern Cape, except for four small mines well outside the Northern Cape in the North West,... 

South Africa has 22 operating manganese mines – AmaranthCX ­
Mamatwan manganese mine in South Africa's Northern Cape.

Rio Tinto changes tack, ready for talks over Bougainville mine

By: Reuters     28th September 2020 Rio Tinto said on Tuesday that it was ready to talk to stakeholders over allegations of human rights breaches at a giant copper mine in Bougainville that it formerly owned, after community members filed a complaint with the Australian government. "We are ready to enter into discussions with the... 

Warrego signs gas offtake agreement with Alcoa

By: Marleny Arnoldi     28th September 2020 ASX-listed Warrego Energy has signed a gas sales agreement with one of Western Australia’s leading gas buyers, Alcoa, for the long term supply of 155 PJ of natural gas from the West Erregulla gas field. The agreement will become effective from January 1, 2024.  

Piedmont signs lithium ore supply deal with Tesla, shares surge

By: Reuters     28th September 2020 Piedmont Lithium on Monday said it signed a five-year deal with Tesla to supply high-purity lithium ore mineral to the US electric carmaker, prompting an 83% surge in the Australian lithium miner's shares. The initial five-year agreement implies that Piedmont will supply about a third of its... 

Friedland outlines potential of Australian battery materials project

By: Mariaan Webb     28th September 2020 Mining entrepreneur Robert Friedland said on Monday that dual-listed Clean TeQ would be patient with the development of the Sunrise battery material project, in New South Wales, and that it would seek to develop the project with partners that understood the value of a responsible supply chain.... 

Friedland outlines potential of Australian battery materials project
Robert Friedland

Lion One publishes updated economics for its Fiji gold project

By: Marleny Arnoldi     28th September 2020 TSX-V- and ASX-listed Lion One Metals has published an updated preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for the Tuvatu gold project, on the island of Viti Levu, in Fiji. The updated PEA states that project’s gold production capacity can be at an average rate of 78 000 oz/y, at 8.6 g/t gold over a... 

Resolute reaches accord with striking union in Mali

By: Marleny Arnoldi     28th September 2020 ASX-listed Resolute Mining’s subsidiary in Mali has managed to sign a conciliation agreement with a union representing workers at the company’s Syama gold mine in the country, which will prevent further strike action at the mine. Resolute’s subsidiary in the country, Société des Mines de Syama... 

Angolan wealth fund invests further $8.6m in Pensana

By: Simone Liedtke     28th September 2020 Angolan sovereign wealth fund Fundo Soberano de Angola (FSDEA) has committed to a further $8.6-million equity investment in junior miner Pensana Rare Earths. The investment will be used to advance the Longonjo project, in Angola, as the first major rare earth mine to be developed in over a decade... 

Australia trims resources revenue outlook on weaker coal, LNG exports

By: Reuters     28th September 2020 Australia has pared its forecasts for mining and energy export revenue this year, as liquefied natural gas (LNG) and metallurgical coal earnings are forecast to be slightly weaker than earlier expected. Total earnings from mining and energy exports are forecast to fall 12% in the year to June... 

Rio Tinto smelter in focus as New Zealand's PM seeks extension

By: Reuters     28th September 2020 New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said on Monday that she will negotiate to extend the operations of Rio Tinto's aluminum smelter in the country by 3-5 years if she is returned to power in the October 17 election. New Zealand Aluminum Smelter's (NZAS) planned closure is a hot election... 

Rio Tinto smelter in focus as New Zealand's PM seeks extension
New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern

Green hydrogen economy growing rapidly – Hatch 

By: Martin Creamer     25th September 2020 At Glencore’s Raglan Mine, in Canada, a closed loop, microgrid system converts excess wind power to hydrogen, which is then stored in tanks. During periods of low wind power, a fuel cell produces electricity from the stored hydrogen, and within the facility are also innovations such as a battery... 

Green hydrogen economy growing rapidly – Hatch
Photo by Raglan Mine
Glencore's Raglan Mine in Canada.
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